In the past twenty years, Philip Frey has developed into one of Maine’s finest landscape painters. Known as a brilliant colorist, Frey paints Maine’s harbors and islands with a bold palette that captures the light and moods of his home state, from the streets of Ellsworth and Portland to Monhegan and Acadia National Park.
Frey is a nationally exhibiting artist best known for his bold paintings of Maine whose primary focus is color and light, and the inherent forms found in nature, interiors, and figures. He paints from direct perception, preferring the dynamic quality, richness, and challenges of working from life.
In 2016, the Zillman Art Museum mounted a solo exhibition of Frey’s work. His work has been highlighted in several books, including Art of Acadia, 2016, and Paintings of Portland, 2018, both by brothers Carl Little and David Little, and in numerous publications, including: Art New England, Gettysburg Review, Maine Policy Review, and Maine Sunday Telegram. In 2018 Marshall Wilkes published Philip Frey: Here and Now, a beautiful monograph on Frey’s career by art historians and critics Carl Little and Daniel Kany. Frey’s work is held in private and corporate collections both nationally and internationally, including those of writer Harlan Coben, Dick Wolf Films, Representative Chellie Pingree, Donald Sussman, and the Zillman Art Museum.
Frey studied at Columbus College of Art and Design and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Painting from Syracuse University in 1990. He is a longtime Buddhist practitioner and has traveled to Nepal and India to study Buddhism. In 1995 he became involved in the Ellsworth Meditation Center and remains an active member.
Frey lives in downeast Maine, where he maintains a full-time studio nestled in the woods.